A single vase of flowers sits outside the door of the apartment where Jasmine Fiore lived in West Hollywood, California, as the international manhunt continues for Ryan Jenkins, her Canadian ex-husband accused of brutally murdering her.
Jenkins, 32, a former VH1 dating show contestant, was charged Thursday with the murder of the 28-year-old swimsuit model, whose nude and mutilated body was found in a suitcase in a trash bin in Buena Park, California on Saturday, August 15.
Until then, Jenkins had been described only as a person of interest in the slaying.
Orange County prosecutors recommended that Jenkins be held in lieu of $10 million bail once arrested. He faces a maximum sentence of 25 years to life in state prison if convicted.
The search for Jenkins went international amid reports he may have crossed the Canadian border from a remote area in Washington state with assistance from family members.
“This message goes out to the family, his mother and father, and to the friends that are helping him try to leave this country,” Fiore’s former boyfriend and family friend Robert Hasman told reporters at Buena Park City Hall Thursday.
“Ryan Jenkins is an animal. What he has done to Jasmine is unspeakable,” Hasman said.
Police said Fiore had been strangled and her fingers and teeth removed, presumably to make identifying her body more difficult.
“Mr. Jenkins is considered dangerous, possibly armed, and has the financial means to hide anywhere in the world,” Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas said.
Early Thursday, authorities in Washington state said a man matching Jenkins’ description was seen boarding a boat bound for a remote area where people can walk across the Canadian border. The boat, which belongs to Jenkins, was later found abandoned in Point Roberts, Wash., near British Columbia.
Jenkins’ black BMW X5 sport utility vehicle and an empty boat trailer were also found in nearby Blaine, Wash. Authorities are still looking for Fiore’s white Mercedes-Benz CLS 550.
Tom Hession of the U.S. Marshals Service said that although there was no official confirmation that the suspect was in Canada, local officials were preparing paperwork to send to law enforcement agencies across the border so an arrest warrant could be issued there.
Jenkins was a contestant on “Megan Wants a Millionaire” — a VH1 dating show in which men compete for the affections of a woman looking to become the “trophy wife” of a well-to-do suitor. VH1 is no longer airing the show in light of the investigation.
Jenkins and Fiore lived together in Los Angeles after marrying in Las Vegas in April, a wedding that was soon annulled, according to her mother.
Prosecutors said the pair checked into the L’Auberge Del Mar hotel in San Diego Aug. 13, left the hotel the next morning and went to a poker party later that day.
Jenkins reported Fiore missing Saturday night, telling investigators that she left their Fairfax Village home in the 800 block of Edinburgh Avenue, near Melrose Avenue, about 8:30 p.m. Friday to run errands, but that she never returned, police said.